Well Sa Pa Wasn’t quite doing it for us, it was very touristy and busy, it also appeared to be lacking any charm or small town feel which was more of what we were going for so we researched a little town near by that apparently had some nice home stays and appeared to be where everyone on trekking tours stayed. Off we headed on Hettie bright and early although it wasn’t far. The view wasn’t too good this morning as it was pretty misty… but we headed up and down the mountains following the map and then across a little makeshift bamboo bridge and then we arrived!! Wahoo. It was a cute little town and there was a little local market going on in the centre when we arrived. We followed the signs to the road where all the home stays appeared to be and what a good move that was. The first one we tried had a cute little bed and private room for 2 people with a little curtain! We also had the most amazing views over the farm lands.
Plus an included breakfast so we were sold. We met 2 people that afternoon both staying at our homestay Abbie and Matt and the four of us set off into town to get some food, the food in this town was of an amazing quality and I loved everything I ate. The town was also really sweet children playing in the roads and water buffalo and goats roaming free everywhere
Hettie went to a garage for a little TLC and Joe and I were both impressed with the 40p mechanics bill!! Sorted.
So we headed back to the homestay for a few drinks… and it think its fair to say we got a little carried away, we played cards with Matt and Abbie and the night went on! It was good fun. I made friends with a cute dog that seemed to be blind and Matt befriended a cat that he named Morris, there was also an abundance of chickens around the home stay and as the night went on we all tried to see who could catch one.
Joe and I decided that in the morning we had to go back into Sa Pa to try and get some money and see if anywhere could extend our visas for us. We woke up early and packed up our bags, off we went Sa Pa, it wasn’t fun, it was cold and raining, the roads were flooded and we got really wet! We got to the travel agents just to be told we’d have to go all the way back to Hanoi to get the visas sorted out! So we headed back to the Homestay where we’d decided to stay another night anyway to re-think the route. We really wanted to go to Ba Be and we should still be able to do that and get back to Hanoi in time. So with a plan in place; beer time it was. Joe went to bed (still feeling rough from last nights antics) and Abbie, Matt and I went for a walk. We’d promised some local ladies that we’d walk with them but the weather was too bad so we brought some of the gifts they were selling. The ladies from the local villages do like to hassel you a lot until you buy something and at the end it was really annoying. We’d make the mistake of telling them “later” the first day but they remember you and they come back demanding that you buy there gifts. We had a little bit of shopping to do anyway so I got that sorted.
One of the local ladies couldn’t speak and her children had befriended us the day before a little 4 year old came up to Joe demanding “IPHONE” haha, before we knew it we were screening Peppa Pig and surrounded by children all good fun until they had to leave and they were not happy.
We didn’t wonder far and I came back ahead of the others for a quick nap. 😀 We played pool and some more cards in the evening and then Joe and I waved the other 2 off on their bus and had an early night!!!